Oct 042013

By Bob Smith.

3kirkpic32Lamgamachies in the papers aboot vandalism in oor bonnie toon mair than afen dweels on the connachin o play parks, brakkin skweel windaes, settin fire tae delerict biggins, damage tae cars or graffiti clartit on wa’s  cairry’t oot bi fowk fa hiv nithing better tae dee or are jist doonricht coorse cyaards.

The “vandalism” a’m spikkin aboot tho’ is cairry’t oot bi the cooncil an their planners or bi developers an their erchitects.

Iss his bin gyaan on sin ivver a cam in fae the kwintra tae bide in the toon close on fifty ‘ear ago.

Gweed fowk compleened awa back ‘en. Nae buggar took muckle notice o them. Fowk compleen nooadays. Nae buggar taks muckle notice o them. So nithings chynged a hear ye say. O aye thingies are chyngin. There’s noo a growein nummer o fowk faa are fair scunner’t at fit’s bin gyaan on in Aiberdeen unner the guise o ‘progress’.

I like the followin quote bi the author C.S.Lewis faa said,

“We all want progress but if you are on the wrong road progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road. In that case the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive”.

So fit wi need in iss toon is somebody faa staans up an says, “aneuch is aneuch, we’re on the wrang roddie, time tae turn back an fin the richt roddie, syne gyaang forrit the gither”.

It winna be the developers cos their interest is jist profit. Foo biggins leuk in relation tae the neebourin eens disna cum intae their wye o thinkin.

It winna be the erchitects cos their interest is profit as weel an een o the wyes they mak profit is bi drawin up somethin tae please the fowk faa employ them.

Aat jist leaves the cooncil an their planners. Aat bein the case as Private Frazer in Dad’s Army wid hae said “we’re doomed, we’re doomed”. A base aat fact on fit his happen’t ower the past fyow decades.

the faither o them aa fin it comes tae ‘vandalism’, the biggin o St Nicholas Hoose

Cast yer myn back, if yer auld aneuch, tae the bonnie Northern Co-op arcade atween Loch Street an the Gallagate. Noo if ivver there wis a chunce tae turn aat arcade intae a mair modernmall’ sae lo’ed bi today’s shoppers, iss wis it. Fit happen’t?

The Northern Co-op biggit a new store nae a hunner yairds fae far the arcade wis an the auld biggin wis left empty tae nearly faa doon tull it wis ruggit doon in the ‘regeneration’ o the area. Aat included biggin the bliddy Bon-Accord Cinter fit effectively cut aff George Street fae the then bustlin Union Street. Progress? Na, na. Jist anither example o vandalism’ in Aiberdeen.

Jist a wee bittie afore iss, Marks an Sparks wintit tae expand their store in St Nicholas Street. Tae accommodate iss, Wallace Toor wid hae bin destroyed in anither act o vandalism if historian Dr Simpson hidna munt’t a campaign tae save the B-listed biggin. Marks an Sparks gied Aiberdeen cooncil siller tae help shift the toor tae far it is noo at Tillydrone.

Wid Aiberdeen Cooncil hae refused plannin permission withoot gettin fit some fowk aat the time ca’ed a ‘backhander’? We’ll nivver ken.

Noo we cum tae the faither o them aa fin it comes tae ‘vandalism’, the biggin o St Nicholas Hoose, fit ..
1) blotted oot the fine view o Provost Skene’s Hoose an connach’t the adjinin gairdens,
2) wis completely at odds wi it’s neebour Marischal College, an
3)wis doonricht ugly.

They’re stairtin tae rugg doon iss monstrosity an noo we can eence agin see the byowty o Provost Skene’s Hoose. Nae fer lang tho’ cos some Philistines wint tae hide it agin ahint mair bliddy steel an gless boxes.

There are mony ither examples o ‘vandalism’ in iss toon. ‘The Pint’ idea fer the Triple Kirks site bein een o them bit a wid rin oot o space if a wis tae list them aa.

We are telt o coorse that fooiver ugly squaar or rectangular steel an gless biggins are, iss is the wye forrit as they are chaiper tae pit up than the likes o granite.

So there ye hae it fowks—Oor eence bonnie toon wull hae tae leuk like a ‘dog’s brakfast’, cos onything else bit steel an gless canna be affordit. An here wis me thinkin we bade in ‘Ile Rich Aiberdeen’.

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Aug 152013

By Bob Smith.

We’re aa familiar wi the descripshuns o Aiberdeen as the Ile Capital o Europe or Ile Rich Aiberdeen. Noo we’ll jist hae tae tak the wird o aa the billies involved in oil aat oor toon IS the Ile Capital o Europe bit fin it cums tae Ile Rich Aiberdeen weel we can aa as citizens hae wir ain views on iss moniker.

There’s nae doot aat aa thae fowk faa are involved in ile an its “supportin cast” are verra weel aff bit in ma opeenion the toon itsel is nae. Nor fin it cums tae it are some o the fowk faa are nae involved wi the “black gold”.

Lits hae a leuk at a fyow facts regardin oor bonnie toon an foo ile his chynged thingies.

There are mair 4×4 vehicles in Aiberdeen than onywye else in the kwintra yet the toon canna it seems afford tae dee a gweed job o repairin the potholes in oor roads an streets caused bi 4×4’s an ither traffic.Div fowk need 4×4’s in the toon or is iss jist anither example o a status symbol in “ile rich Aiberdeen”?

Great rejoicin  fae the hoose developers an sellin agents aboot the recent news aat hoose prices in Aiberdeen are risin aboot £1000 a wikk.

Bad news fer young fowk faa are tryin tae get a fit or even a tae on the hoose buyin laidder. The likes o Stewartie Milne an his ilk mak a lot o noise aboot including affordable hooses in their various developments. Affordable tae faa? Certinly nae tae a lot o fowk faa are nae involved in ile.

Hiv ye tried eatin oot in sum o the so ca’ed funcy restaurants in Aiberdeen? Michty me leukin at sum o the prices on the menus ye’d hae tae tak oot a mortgage afore ye waakit throwe the door.

The gap between the weel aff an the nae sae weel aff in oor toon is widenin baith in the cost o livin an in the wage structure.

So since the discovery o ile sum fowk in the city hiv definitely got richer bit the toon itsel hisna. Iss shudna hae bin allood tae happen

 iss toon wull survive lang efter the ile rins oot

Myn ye altho’ in monetary terms the toon coffers seem tae be slowly emptyin dinna forgit iss toon is rich in lots o ither wyes.

We hiv a rich cultural heritage. The toon his a richness in its architecture despite some silly eejits o architects an developers buoyed by ile money tryin their best tae bugger things up.

Aiberdeen his a “richness” in its local population faa hiv seen the gweed an the bad o “Ile Rich Aiberdeen” but bide stoically  optimistic aboot the toon’s future. As lang as wi hae fowk faa are nae blinded bi the bling iss toon wull survive lang efter the ile rins oot. We micht nae langer be classed “Ile Rich Aiberdeen” bit we wull ayewis hae anither kine o “richness” fit the ile can nivver bring.

A wid far raither the toon wint back tae bein kent as the “Granite City” or the “Silver City By The Sea” as iss wid dee oor local tourist industry faar mair gweed that bein kent as the  “ile capital o Europe”.

I’ll leave the last wird tae American author, political an financial journalist Matt Taibbi faa said:

“To Wall Street, a firm like BP isn’t just a profitable company with lots of assets like oil rigs and pipelines and gas stations—it’s also a corporation that routinely borrows hundreds of millions of dollars to keep its business up and running”

Soonds like the cooncil o “Ile rich Aiberdeen”

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